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Author Topic: Bruce, Our Knight in Shining Armor? Stocksy Co-op  (Read 43580 times)

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« Reply #225 on: February 09, 2013, 15:02 »
0
You can set up a separate account in another name and legally remain exclusive with IS while you move over to another exclusive arrangement (from now on) with newly created images.  IS has agreed to this when asked. 

If this was correct at any point in the past, I would not expect it now, in the current environment.

It was asked and approved 3 months ago by a big fish


« Reply #226 on: February 09, 2013, 15:07 »
+1
You can set up a separate account in another name and legally remain exclusive with IS while you move over to another exclusive arrangement (from now on) with newly created images.  IS has agreed to this when asked. 

If this was correct at any point in the past, I would not expect it now, in the current environment.

It was asked and approved 3 months ago by a big fish

I would love to hear more details ( you can PM me ).  Again, though, 3 months ago is not "now".

« Reply #227 on: February 09, 2013, 15:10 »
0
You can set up a separate account in another name and legally remain exclusive with IS while you move over to another exclusive arrangement (from now on) with newly created images.  IS has agreed to this when asked. 

If this was correct at any point in the past, I would not expect it now, in the current environment.

It was asked and approved 3 months ago by a big fish

I would love to hear more details ( you can PM me ).  Again, though, 3 months ago is not "now".
If it's ok as part of Istock's policy then it shouldn't be sensitive information, I'd also like to hear the details or do you have a link to the discussion?

« Reply #228 on: February 09, 2013, 15:38 »
0
You can set up a separate account in another name and legally remain exclusive with IS while you move over to another exclusive arrangement (from now on) with newly created images.  IS has agreed to this when asked. 

If this was correct at any point in the past, I would not expect it now, in the current environment.

It was asked and approved 3 months ago by a big fish

Please share this very valuable information.

« Reply #229 on: February 09, 2013, 16:43 »
0
They've shrugged at similar scams arrangements in the past - where a husband and wife team put essentially the same stuff on iStock exclusively and elsewhere as independents. Of course, they were standing side by side when they clicked their shutters, or one would press the button and move away from the tripod to let the other one press the button. Entirely right and proper, no doubt, and a great way for a family to get all the exclusive perks plus all the benefits of being independent.

But they can, as someone pointed out, terminate your membership whenever they like without having to provide a reason, so you'd better be very clear about it being OK before trying something like that.

lisafx

« Reply #230 on: February 09, 2013, 17:32 »
+1
If only it was that easy! I have been at iStock for 8 years, I have a portfolio of 4000+ images and a weekly income of 4 figures. My income is rising too, not reaching what it was 2 years ago or so, but rising. I know from others experience that giving up exclusivity would mean an immediate large drop in income of up to 75%.

Yes, I can definitely understand your side of the story too. Your main problem is that you should have quit exclusivity a long time ago, before you had become too dependent on microstock income (I quit exclusivity back in 2006). Of course thinking about the past doesn't help here...


Unless you live under a rock, signs of an epic fail from istock have been showing for a couple of years now. I dont understand this "i depend on this income to feed my family." EVERYONE depends on whatever income they make. It is never easy changing jobs, it is a lot of work and a lot of stress. This didnt all just come about with the google getty deal. How many "naysayers", as they frequently get called, predicted this a long time ago? everyone made a choice. If you chose not to listen and "kept hoping", based on nothing, i dont think its fair to expect too much empathy. Some empathy will be given, as for anyone down on their luck, but not a whole lot. Time for a plan b!

Thanks Cathy, I am glad to hear someone say it.  It's pretty darned rich to hear Vlad the Imp crying poormouth and asking for empathy.  This is the single biggest Istock apologist in the forums who had only sarcasm and derision for everyone else who complained or tried to stand up against Getty/Istock's gutting of our incomes over the last couple of years.

I have plenty of empathy for most of us here, Istock exclusives and independents alike, but as far as Vlad goes, I say "you made your bed, now lie in it".   

« Reply #231 on: February 09, 2013, 17:39 »
0
They've shrugged at similar scams arrangements in the past - where a husband and wife team put essentially the same stuff on iStock exclusively and elsewhere as independents. Of course, they were standing side by side when they clicked their shutters, or one would press the button and move away from the tripod to let the other one press the button. Entirely right and proper, no doubt, and a great way for a family to get all the exclusive perks plus all the benefits of being independent.

But they can, as someone pointed out, terminate your membership whenever they like without having to provide a reason, so you'd better be very clear about it being OK before trying something like that.

I've often wondered why people don't (perhaps they DO and I'm unaware) simply have one body of work they upload as an exclusive to iStock and then just upload other stuff to the range of other micros under a different user name. This would be fantastically easy I'd think, if you had a cooperative wife or husband for ID and banking purposes. 

« Reply #232 on: February 09, 2013, 17:46 »
0
I just hope Saatchi don't kick out Bruce ;D

« Reply #233 on: February 09, 2013, 17:48 »
0
I just hope Saatchi don't kick out Bruce ;D

His resume on Linkedin says he left Saatchi in 2011. Don't know if that's accurate, but I'd assume so.

« Reply #234 on: February 09, 2013, 17:53 »
0
I just hope Saatchi don't kick out Bruce ;D

His resume on Linkedin says he left Saatchi in 2011. Don't know if that's accurate, but I'd assume so.

ooooops my bad, was checking his portfolio there, last files from 2011

Reef

  • astonmars.com
« Reply #235 on: February 09, 2013, 17:54 »
0
What some don't understand is that a Plan B may not involve spreading work to other micros. It might not involve micros, or indeed selling images at all.
So for some people it may be worth staying exclusive and focussing on getting their ducks in a row, or whatever that saying is, in other areas of their lives, rather than wasting time on the other micros.

You hit that one on the nail for me, Sue.  Micro is so saturated its time to work smarter not harder, i.e. don't spread your work around, upload more and such.

« Reply #236 on: February 09, 2013, 17:56 »
+2
I have pleny of empathy for most of us here, Istock exclusives and independents alike, but as far as Vlad goes, I say "you made your bed, now lie in it".
Come on you've been bad mouthing everyone that disagrees with you, calling people shills and apologists just because they are doing well and don't see things your way.  I don't see Vlad putting anyone down but I do see you calling people names. 

« Reply #237 on: February 09, 2013, 18:06 »
+1
We have always had a joint account with the micros, and joint copyright. A couple of months before the RC's came in, IS wrote to us and said that under Canadian law, we could only have one name on the copyright. We could choose just one name, or split our portfolio and have two accounts.

We decided to put just one name on the copyright, to save them the work of doing the split.

Early last year, when we were thinking of going independent, we thought about splitting the portfolio and going independent with just one half, staying exclusive with the other. I should say that we produce two entirely different sets of images, so there would have been no chance of similars on other sites. We wrote and asked if they would do this for us.

They deleted the request without answering. So, I guess it depends who you are.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2013, 18:49 by Travelling-light »

« Reply #238 on: February 09, 2013, 20:51 »
+2
Bruce would be very wise to NOT lock out the masses, but maybe take this simple approach.  If joe-photographer can meet our acceptance criteria, joe photographer has two options: image exclusivity which will be put in our premium priced collection.  If no, it goes into our general collection at a lower price point.

If it follows the business model that many co-ops have, there might be a financial investment required from all members to get the model up and running. I wouldn't begin to guess on a number, if that is indeed the case. But I guarantee a lot of photographers will be screened out by their unwillingness to make such a commitment.

Most people here would, I think. But I believe the discussion at MSG is by and large carried on by people in the top 20%, and many cases top 1% of contributors. The photographer not on these boards, who uploads maybe 50 or 100 images to DT or SS and then forgets about it, content to make payout once or twice a year, won't even know about Stocksy let alone have an interest in making that type of time/fiscal investment.

If Stocksy were composed of 90% MSG contributors, it would probably be the highest quality microstock collection in existence.

Good post.  And I agree. And depending on the model and the buyer base, I'd be willing to invest something, say in the range of $5 to $10k. Of course I'd have to do some form of cost benefit, be privy to inside information via non-disclosure, etc.
I was wondering if a small "pay-to-play" fee approach might work. It costs a dollar to upload an image. That dollar buys a share of the co-op. The dollar would tend to discourage to many similars and other bad content. The co-op would have a supplementary income for early operations and advertising. If things go well co-op earnings can be returned as distributions later based on the shares held.

« Reply #239 on: February 09, 2013, 21:30 »
-1
Bruce would be very wise to NOT lock out the masses, but maybe take this simple approach.  If joe-photographer can meet our acceptance criteria, joe photographer has two options: image exclusivity which will be put in our premium priced collection.  If no, it goes into our general collection at a lower price point.

If it follows the business model that many co-ops have, there might be a financial investment required from all members to get the model up and running. I wouldn't begin to guess on a number, if that is indeed the case. But I guarantee a lot of photographers will be screened out by their unwillingness to make such a commitment.

Most people here would, I think. But I believe the discussion at MSG is by and large carried on by people in the top 20%, and many cases top 1% of contributors. The photographer not on these boards, who uploads maybe 50 or 100 images to DT or SS and then forgets about it, content to make payout once or twice a year, won't even know about Stocksy let alone have an interest in making that type of time/fiscal investment.

If Stocksy were composed of 90% MSG contributors, it would probably be the highest quality microstock collection in existence.

Good post.  And I agree. And depending on the model and the buyer base, I'd be willing to invest something, say in the range of $5 to $10k. Of course I'd have to do some form of cost benefit, be privy to inside information via non-disclosure, etc.
I was wondering if a small "pay-to-play" fee approach might work. It costs a dollar to upload an image. That dollar buys a share of the co-op. The dollar would tend to discourage to many similars and other bad content. The co-op would have a supplementary income for early operations and advertising. If things go well co-op earnings can be returned as distributions later based on the shares held.

Stan, that's another good idea.
There's also the possibility of taking less than the full commission in cash, and using the rest as an investment.

vlad_the_imp

« Reply #240 on: February 10, 2013, 05:17 »
+3
Quote
It's pretty darned rich to hear Vlad the Imp crying poormouth and asking for empathy

"Crying poormouth" I don't even understand what that means. What I have been trying to do is counter the anti IS bias that exists here, promulgated particularly by bitter people such as yourself. I don't particularly love IS myself, my income and commission have both dropped and IS have made some particularly bad decisions which have impacted on buyers and sellers alike, however, I was pointing out that it's still possible to earn money there and that , from my point of view, income was also rising, albeit gradually rather than spectacularly.
I was also, in my posts, pointing out the reality of being an exclusive, both positive and negative, and that people who glibly suggest others give up on IS or drop exclusivity often do so from a different position professionally and financially from mine.

Quote
Come on you've been bad mouthing everyone that disagrees with you, calling people shills and apologists just because they are doing well and don't see things your way.  I don't see Vlad putting anyone down but I do see you calling people names.

I see that comment has attracted more likes than your attack on me, maybe a time for self-reflection on your part might be in order. I am reassured that some people appreciate that I am here to provide some sort of balance to the arguments.

Yuri_Arcurs

  • One Crazy PhotoManic MadPerson
« Reply #241 on: February 10, 2013, 06:28 »
+5
I love the idea and It is strikingly similar to something I discussed with IS management back 4 years ago and strikingly similar to a business model we have been developing for www.peopleimages.com. hmmm...
Our only problem and something that have caused almost a full-stop actually and that we have been trying to solve for the interim is: how do you market, promote and service a platform for which you are not making any money? With a Co-Op owned site you can't even get VC investment.
This site will portray Bruce as a gregarious individual and a community supporter, but that might just be the primary outcome. Sales don't just "appear".
It was Getty's team that drove Istock to the success it is today. Istock had a revenue of 10mil USD when sold to Getty despite being a first mover in microstock and having been around for 5 years.

Poncke

« Reply #242 on: February 10, 2013, 06:34 »
+1
I love the idea and It is strikingly similar to something I discussed with IS management back 4 years ago and strikingly similar to a business model we have been developing for www.peopleimages.com. hmmm...
Our only problem and something that have caused almost a full-stop actually and that we have been trying to solve for the interim is: how do you market, promote and service a platform for which you are not making any money? With a Co-Op owned site you can't even get VC investment.
This site will portray Bruce as a gregarious individual and a community supporter, but that might just be the primary outcome. Sales don't just "appear".
It was Getty's team that drove Istock to the success it is today. Istock had a revenue of 10mil USD when sold to Getty despite being a first mover in microstock and having been around for 5 years.
There seem to be companies that invest in coops http://www.coopcapital.coop/coopcapital

Microbius

« Reply #243 on: February 10, 2013, 06:48 »
+1
I love the idea and It is strikingly similar to something I discussed with IS management back 4 years ago and strikingly similar to a business model we have been developing for www.peopleimages.com. hmmm...
Our only problem and something that have caused almost a full-stop actually and that we have been trying to solve for the interim is: how do you market, promote and service a platform for which you are not making any money? With a Co-Op owned site you can't even get VC investment.
This site will portray Bruce as a gregarious individual and a community supporter, but that might just be the primary outcome. Sales don't just "appear".
It was Getty's team that drove Istock to the success it is today. Istock had a revenue of 10mil USD when sold to Getty despite being a first mover in microstock and having been around for 5 years.


If it was a coop 10 million USD profit (after expenses incl. marketing etc.) would be an acceptable dividend to divide among the coop, taking into account that the "owners" had already received the income form their sales on an ongoing basis.

ETA oops, reread the post, revenue not profit, really that low?

« Reply #244 on: February 10, 2013, 06:55 »
+18
Yuri, the difference between a co-op and Getty would be that in Getty the profits go to shareholders, in a co-op the profits go to members.  In either case, the profit is distributed after all the expenses have been deducted, so there is nothing to stop a co-op marketing and promoting itself the same as Getty does.

They are talking about a 50% commission rate, which is lower than Alamy had up until this year and Alamy still had the resources to grow as well as having sufficient profits to fund its cancer research project on top.

Given that Bruce has extensive experience in funding and running a stock agency and dealing on a daily basis with some of the biggest players in the business, it seems unlikely that he is plunging into a new project without having thought through a viable way of securing the necessary funding. You don't announce a business plan until you are confident you have that particular detail sorted out.

I'd be fascinated to hear exactly what words iStock's management used when you suggested giving all the money to the artists instead of keeping it for the managers and shareholders.  Was it a short discussion, by any chance?

« Reply #245 on: February 10, 2013, 08:10 »
0
Yuri, the difference between a co-op and Getty would be that in Getty the profits go to shareholders, in a co-op the profits go to members.  In either case, the profit is distributed after all the expenses have been deducted, so there is nothing to stop a co-op marketing and promoting itself the same as Getty does.

They are talking about a 50% commission rate, which is lower than Alamy had up until this year and Alamy still had the resources to grow as well as having sufficient profits to fund its cancer research project on top.

Given that Bruce has extensive experience in funding and running a stock agency and dealing on a daily basis with some of the biggest players in the business, it seems unlikely that he is plunging into a new project without having thought through a viable way of securing the necessary funding. You don't announce a business plan until you are confident you have that particular detail sorted out.

I'd be fascinated to hear exactly what words iStock's management used when you suggested giving all the money to the artists instead of keeping it for the managers and shareholders.  Was it a short discussion, by any chance?

I'd also like to know if Yuri got special treatment over the Google deal after his legal discussion with Getty. I tried reading through older posts where this was mentioned but can't find any posts that answer this.  Maybe we'll never know.

ShadySue

« Reply #246 on: February 10, 2013, 08:17 »
0
I'd also like to know if Yuri got special treatment over the Google deal after his legal discussion with Getty. I tried reading through older posts where this was mentioned but can't find any posts that answer this.  Maybe we'll never know.
It's probably sub judice (which I have just learned via wikipedia applies under Canadian law but not US law, so files uploaded via iS, yes; via Getty, no).

In any case, if you know which images he had there, you could check if they were removed or are still there; and you could, if very interested, check if any go up in future.

« Reply #247 on: February 10, 2013, 09:05 »
+6
Actually I would use your PeopleImages project as an example. You began the project with connections and a highly sought after portfolio, did a few interviews to help get your domain out there, and by your accounts it sounds like an early success.

Bruce Livingstone should have quite a few connections with buyers, and potentially an extensive buyer list to recruit from.

I agree with you completely that starting a new site from scratch is extremely challenging in a very saturated marketplace. My efforts at Warmpicture have suggested as much, though I hardly have Bruce's skills nor much financing to work with. Stockfresh seems to have been a big disappointment for others. And the recent Google Images changes are a significant roadblock too. If this is to work, I believe it will take someone with Bruce's skills to make it work.

Regardless of the odds, the potential of this project is far too great not to give it 100% effort to make it work.

I love the idea and It is strikingly similar to something I discussed with IS management back 4 years ago and strikingly similar to a business model we have been developing for www.peopleimages.com. hmmm...
Our only problem and something that have caused almost a full-stop actually and that we have been trying to solve for the interim is: how do you market, promote and service a platform for which you are not making any money? With a Co-Op owned site you can't even get VC investment.
This site will portray Bruce as a gregarious individual and a community supporter, but that might just be the primary outcome. Sales don't just "appear".
It was Getty's team that drove Istock to the success it is today. Istock had a revenue of 10mil USD when sold to Getty despite being a first mover in microstock and having been around for 5 years.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2013, 09:08 by djpadavona »

« Reply #248 on: February 10, 2013, 09:15 »
-2
Quote
It's pretty darned rich to hear Vlad the Imp crying poormouth and asking for empathy

"Crying poormouth" I don't even understand what that means. What I have been trying to do is counter the anti IS bias that exists here, promulgated particularly by bitter people such as yourself. I don't particularly love IS myself, my income and commission have both dropped and IS have made some particularly bad decisions which have impacted on buyers and sellers alike, however, I was pointing out that it's still possible to earn money there and that , from my point of view, income was also rising, albeit gradually rather than spectacularly.
I was also, in my posts, pointing out the reality of being an exclusive, both positive and negative, and that people who glibly suggest others give up on IS or drop exclusivity often do so from a different position professionally and financially from mine.

I see that comment has attracted more likes than your attack on me, maybe a time for self-reflection on your part might be in order. I am reassured that some people appreciate that I am here to provide some sort of balance to the arguments.

Please explain to me how you are in such a unique position professionally and financially? WE ALL NEED MONEY TO PAY BILLS! I just don't get why you keep separating yourself as someone special? And that makes the rest of us bitter? People are only trying to give you some suggestions, in response to your "woe is me, I'm exclusive and have to feed my family." If you don't want to take the suggestions, don't!

The balance you provided in the past to the arguments weren't even realistic. To me, you fell into the "drinking the koolaid" category. It has only been here in the last couple of weeks where you have even added "well I do admit they have made some pretty bad mistakes" into your posts. Of all the people to call bitter, lisafx? She has tried to remain neutral as long as humanly possible, but that just goes to show how disgusting Getty is when they can push her over the edge!

This is my last post about this, since it is so OFF-TOPIC. Back to debating Bruce's good and bad points...  :D

« Reply #249 on: February 10, 2013, 09:18 »
0
I love the idea and It is strikingly similar to something I discussed with IS management back 4 years ago and strikingly similar to a business model we have been developing for www.peopleimages.com. hmmm...
Our only problem and something that have caused almost a full-stop actually and that we have been trying to solve for the interim is: how do you market, promote and service a platform for which you are not making any money? With a Co-Op owned site you can't even get VC investment.
This site will portray Bruce as a gregarious individual and a community supporter, but that might just be the primary outcome. Sales don't just "appear".
It was Getty's team that drove Istock to the success it is today. Istock had a revenue of 10mil USD when sold to Getty despite being a first mover in microstock and having been around for 5 years.
There seem to be companies that invest in coops http://www.coopcapital.coop/coopcapital


Didn't Bruce make $50 million or something on the deal? Maybe he's using his own money for startup?


 

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